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Story White House Conferences on Children 9-3

Chapter 4   Getting the Word Out

Five hundred youth were among the attendees at the Midcentury White House Conference on Children and Youth, 1950.
Five hundred youth were among the attendees at the Midcentury White House Conference on Children and Youth, 1950.
Photo Credit: National Archives
White House Conferences on Children – Following the first White House Conference on Children in 1909, conferences were called approximately every 10 years through 1970, serving to focus national attention on the needs of all children.
The scope and topics varied greatly. For example:
  • The 1919 White House Conference on Standards of Child Welfare was an intimate gathering of approximately 200 specialists, laymen, and international visitors. By contrast, the 1930 White House Conference on Child Health and Protection was preceded by 16 months of fact finding by experts, attended by more than 3,000 participants, and documented in 32 volumes of final reports.
  • The Midcentury White House Conference on Children and Youth, a gathering of nearly 6,000, was notable for being the first to emphasize children’s emotional development, with its focus on a “healthy personality.”
  • Among the 14,000 people attending 1960’s Golden Anniversary White House Conference on Children and Youth were 1,400 official youth delegates of high school and college age.
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